Wet and dry at Wilstone

A breeze-blown drizzle greeted my arrival at Wilstone Reservoir near Tring yesterday, giving a monochrome cast to the view across the water, the surrounding Chiltern hills rolled up in blankets of grey. I’d dropped in after lunch at The Valiant Trooper in Aldbury and determined to explore for an hour…

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Pintails, Snipe and more at Amwell

A relaxed wander around Amwell NR today yielded a fine collection of bird sightings and some nice photographic opportunities. A pair of Bullfinch were first to show themselves as I walked to James Hide, where Reed Buntings and displaying Dunnock came close to the hide, lured by the well stocked…

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Swan Song

The huge skyscapes and wide horizons of East Anglia drew me north today, clear skies and uplifting sunlight that signalled the march of spring, were too much for restless feet to bare after days of endless grey, . The wintering swans on the fenland washes would soon be heading in…

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Flying can be dangerous

We were sad to discover, upon emerging into the -9 degrees of cold this morning for the school run, that a female kestrel had met it’s end and died on our path. Our assumption from the position of the body is that it had broken it’s neck in an impact…

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Re-setting the clock

As the old year draws to a close we naturally look back at the previous twelve months and forward to the next. For me and in the context of this blog, I can look back at some fine birding trips, the discovery new locations and some very special birds, a…

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No poem today?

The Blackbirds vied with the pesky ratsfor scrapson the bird tabletodaybut a poem didn’t show itself.I wonder what tomorrow will bring? Huge clouds of wood pigeons a thousand strongperhaps, the sound as memorable as the sight.I’ll waitand see.It’s never what you expect. MW/KH

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Lazy days

Whilst the five ringed circus entertained the world a few short miles south down the Lee Valley, Great Amwell basked in summer warmth. Thirsty livestock visited the shoreline, whilst Little Egret fished the shallows and Great Crested Grebe delved deeper. In the meadows butterflies danced across the sea of grass,…

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It’s been emotional

After two weeks of hosting the greatest show on earth, London can take a pause and a breath before the five ringed circus starts up again with the arrival of the paralympic games at the end of the month.The sport has been phenomenal with the heights of human achievement further…

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Bitterns at Great Amwell

Imagine seeing a Bittern 20 seconds after entering a bird hide for the first time in your life. This was a reality for one of my young companions today who had been set a theme of birdwatching for part of their homework. Our visit was impromptu and relatively short, but…

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RSPB Snettisham

Time and tide wait for no man and they certainly didn’t wait for me. To experience RSPB Snettisham at its best a visit should focus around high tide, when the great mudflats that separate Norfolk from Lincolnshire are covered by water, forcing the multitude of waders that rely on its…

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